Saturday, March 26, 2011

30-Day Song Challenge, Day 23 - A Song in a Foreign Language

The initiator of this here list suggested a change to Day 23, and that suits me just fine, especially in light of the artist who comes immediately to mind.

Serge Gainsbourg's probably best known today as the dad of chanteuse Charlotte Gainsbourg. But for over twenty years, he was an honest-to-God superstar in France, cutting records that combined his sense of lackadaisical Gallic cool with a wide variety of musical influences--jazz, afro-cuban, disco, and rock. My favorite Gainsbourg track is "Bonnie and Clyde," directly inspired by the 1967 Arthur Penn flick and sung in duet with the exotic Brigitte Bardot. Some of Gainsbourg's work took a left turn into kitsch (not a bad thing); "Bonnie and Clyde," with its surging acoustic guitar, strange looped (or at least they sound looped) cymbals, and insistent strings, just sounds gothic and haunting and wonderful. And really damned cool.

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